Sunday, September 1, 2013

Testing Out LeapFrog's New LeapPad Ultra

This post brought to you by LeapFrog. Natalie and Michaela Byrd were beyond excited when the UPS guy recently arrived with a large box for them to open. They got to test out two new LeapPad Ultra systems from LeapFrog, and I get to tell you all about it. I wasn't sure how much different the system would be from the LeapPad 2 unit that we tested out, but I was pleasantly surprised to see some neat upgrades!
A look at the new LeapPad Ultra (Review), from Serenity Now

What's new about LeapPad Ultra that I love?
  • WiFi
For me, the coolest thing about the new units is that they come with WiFi. The folks at LeapFrog added a kid-safe web browser (LeapSearch) that gives them access to age-appropriate content...all of it pre-screened by the learning team at LeapFrog. 

My kiddos can visit more than 1500 videos, images, and websites including PBS Kids, Nick Jr., National Geographic Kids, and Sesame Street (yay, Big Bird!). I actually feel safer knowing that I can't (meaning the kids can't either) add sites to LeapSearch. It's all from scratch, filtered content approved by learning experts.

And I can turn the WiFi off if I want to under the Parental Controls. If I want to. Whenever I feel like it. Yes. Yes, I can.
  • Peer-to-Peer Play on the Same Network
Some of the new games offer a special peer-to-peer play option for kiddos in the same household who want to compete. They can even instant message each other using the cool PetChat app, which has pre-programmed phrases. Not cool for a 15 year old, but pretty awesome for a seven and five year old!
  • Quick Sync
The WiFi feature also makes it easier for me to sync content to the girls' LeapPad Ultra systems. I can also browse, buy, and download apps from the LeapFrog library (videos, games, books, music, etc)...all while using the unit!
A look at the new LeapPad Ultra (Review), from Serenity Now

What are the specs?
A look at the new LeapPad Ultra (Review), from Serenity Now
I know some of you are real techie-oriented. I am not, so I will explain what's new about LPU as best as I can:

There is a new, larger screen. At seven inches, it is high resolution and specially designed to help your little guys learn to write using the included the same time supporting a touch screen for more interaction. Front and back camera and video recorder, MP3 Player, Rechargeable Battery, AC Adaptor, 8GB for storage and apps.

Free content! LPU comes with a music player and ten learning songs, Art Studio Ultra and Photo Fun Ultra Apps, improved Pet Pad app, Pet Chat, Utilities (calculator, notepad, calendar, voice memo, clock/stopwatch), and one download from the LeapFrog App Center.

Would this make a good gift for my kids?

Judging by the reaction my girls had when they opened the shipping box, I'd say yes. Buying for Christmas can get expensive, for parents and other relatives. Saving up for a purchase like this would make for a wonderful gift. The games and apps make for fun stocking stuffers and "extras." As a mom who is currently very much focused on making her dollars stretch, I can't always just run out and pick up the latest and greatest toy. Plan ahead for Christmas now and add the LeapPad Ultra to your shopping list.

How much do you let your kids play?

There's not much that makes me roll my eyes more than kids who are constantly glued to a screen. Believe me, my kids would watch TV or play on their LeapPad units for hours if I'd let them. For us, it's all about finding balance. When chores have been completed and/or reading time logged, then I allow them some "screen time" with their video games in short doses. I do love that LeapFrog offers some educational options! We make sure these tablets are play things and not habits.

And, as I've said before, our LeapPads are life savers for those times when we're stuck at a doctor's office, waiting for a sibling during dance class, or long car trips. Quiet kids= less stressed mom.

In short, I love the changes that LeapFrog has made to the new LeapPad Ultra units. My girls look forward to taking a break to watch a video, read an eBook, or play with a fun new app. They love the new Turbo Racing Game.
A look at the new LeapPad Ultra (Review), from Serenity Now

If you enjoyed this post or found it helpful, I hope you'll click your "Pin It" button to add this post to Pinterest, or a +1 for Google+. And I always appreciate kind comments.

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Disclosure: I was sent two LeapPad Ultra units for review, but was not financially compensated for this post. As always, all opinions are my own!


  1. We love LeapFrog products at our house. This looks great!

  2. Oh how we loved Leap Frog products! My kids had the very first little leap pad that came out! Such a great company!

  3. This looks like a toy that can be both fun and educational for a child. I'm sure the girls were happy to test this product for you!

  4. We love Leap Frog products! I'm actually considering purchasing a LPU for my 2 1/2 year old this year for Christmas...great review!!

  5. Oh, how fun! Lila has been pestering me for a Leap Pad for ages now! This is a great review! I'm going to be looking into this a bit further now!

  6. When my kids were younger we practically owned stock in Leapfrog! They sure make great products!

  7. My kids would love these! They love video games, but I am always looking for more educational options.

  8. Storing this in the back of noggin' for when we have kiddos of our own! Thanks!

    The Thinking Closet

  9. I just received my sons leap pad ultra in the mail and I'm unsure how to get to nick Jr on leap search. Could you explain to me how to? Thank you


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